Born 15 February 1966, Eid, Norway
Singer / pianist / songwriter / actor. Stephen Ackles is the son of a Norwegian mother (Bergliot Kittilsen) and an American father (Allan Dale Ackles), who died in 1989 at the age of 59. Stephen's musical career started at age 14, and at fifteen he won his first talent show. In 1982 he formed his first band : "The Silly Dream", which toured in Norway with "The Elvis Presley Show". He was on the road for most of the early eighties with "Memory Band", and gained enormous experience as as a live artist. This is why Stephen still sounds as great live as on studio recordings. The year 1986 was sort of a professional breakthrough. He formed "Memphis News" with "Midnight Choir" singer Paal Flaata. This resulted in his first signing with a record company. Prior to that, Stephen had made several recordings for different companies, but this was the first real release on heavy vinyl. His first solo record was released on Hill Records in 1988, and was nominated for a Norwegian Grammy Award (Spellemanns-prisen). In 1990 he won the award of Norwegian Champion in the genre Country, and then attended the International Country festival in Holland as the Norwegian contribution. From this event he carried a gold star for the best self-written song "Remember The Time" in his suitcase back to Norway. Two more Norwegian Grammy nominations for "Let´s Keep The Night" and "If this Ain´t Music" followed in the period 1991-1993. In 1992, Stephen recorded a duet with Narvel Felts, "Remember", which went to # 6 on the Norwegian hitparade. Other famous names with whom he has recorded include James Burton, Waylon Jennings and Linda Gail Lewis and virtually every famous Norwegian artist. Stephen's music is a mix of rock 'n' roll, country and gospel. Jerry Lee Lewis is his greatest influence. Eleven albums have been released, of which "The Gospel According To Stephen Ackles" was awarded the prestigious "Anskar Skolens Mediepris 2000" in the spring of 2003. The following songs by Ackles have topped the Norwegian hitparade: Hey you, Bettina, One for the moon, Let's keep the night, Det er lørdag og rock and roll, The American Trilogy, and John the Revelator.
Stephen has been nominated for a Norwegian Grammy three times, but never got one. (Bastards! - Dik) He does about 150 shows a year, including TV and radio appearances. He is also an actor and plays theatres all over Norway. Another tour was kicked off this winter. Stephen signed a new record deal with West Records in 2002 and released a follow-up gospel album that year. Universal Norway recently decided to reissue Stephen`s back catalog. The albums "One for the moon", "Rocking my life away" and "Sulten på livet"(Norwegian lyrics only) are again out there and available for everybody to enjoy. His most recent recording is "White Christmas"/"I can't have a merry Christmas Mary without you" for the holiday season. Stephen Ackles still rocks on!
Album discography: Stephen Ackles and the Memphis News (1988, Hill Records, Norway and Sun Jay records in Sweden)
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